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Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

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Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby TDC » Sat Jan 26, 2013 11:51 am

Rainy January day in San Diego. What better way to spend the morning than thinking about summer backpacking. I am a little lazy to search the forum and piece together answers...so I write this.

I would like to see the Ionian Basin for the first time. Maybe climb Mt Goddard or Scylla while in the region. I am going solo in Aug. I have cross country skills. Comfortable on mainly class 2 terrain and have a smattering of class 3 experience. I think I move at an average to quick pace under full load. I am drawn to the route:

IN: North Lake-Lamarck Col-Darwin Canyon-Wanda Lake (2 days?)
EXPLORING/PEAK BAGGING: Mt. Goddard-Wanda Pass-Scylla (2 days?)
OUT: JMT-Bishop Pass-South Lake (2 days?)

(Not a loop. Hope to get a shuttle)

Questions: Is an out and back from South Lake about the same amount of time/distance?

I need to balance wanting to see new regions (North Lake/Lamarck Col/Darwin Canyon on the way to the Ionian Basin) with maximizing time off (6 days max.)

Thanks, Todd C



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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby Wandering Daisy » Sat Jan 26, 2013 6:17 pm

An alternative approach is via Florence Lake. Depends on where you are coming from. Definitely faster if you live in the Fresno area. May be a bit longer miles but basically a walk in all up hill to the Ionian Basin. With an 8AM boat ferry, I have reached Martha Lake mid morning on day 2. You can do a loop and come out Evolution Valley. Depends on which side of Ionian Basin you want to reach. I think going in Florence Lake is good if your goal is to climb Mt. Goddard and Scylla; less suitable if you want to explore the east part of the basin and climb Charybids. Just a thought.
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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby Jim F » Sat Jan 26, 2013 10:15 pm

Hi Todd,

In 2012 I hiked from North Lake, over Lamarck Col, through Darwin Canyon and up the JMT to Wanda Lake. In 2011 I hiked from Wanda Lake down the JMT and out to South Lake over Bishop Pass. My age and conditioning were nearly identical and both segments are stll clear in my memory. I would say the effort for each is about the same (with perhaps a bit more work required going from Wanda Lake to South Lake). Each path provides a real treat with absolutely stunning terrain. Of course, Darwin Canyon requires a little boulder hopping.

Note that the trailheads differ somewhat. North Lake has abundant space for parking, but no bear boxes. South Lake has many bear boxes, but finding a decent parking spot is not always easy. I have hitched twice from South Lake to North Lake without significant difficulty.

Have a great hike.

Jim F

PS: On August 9, 2011, my hike from Wanda Lake (still half frozen) to below Helen Lake was almost entirely in the snow. Let's see how the remainder of this winter plays out.
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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby AaronRDavis » Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:23 pm

I'm interested to hear more about this. I am planning a 5 day into Ionian Basin (from Fresno though). Debating if I should enter from Florence or Wishon.
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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby TDC » Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:14 am

I am definitely entering from the eastside not Fresno, most likely North Lake and going south. I would like to attempt Starr's route on Goddard then hike over to camp at the base of Scylla and give that peak a go. How long on average is the hike from Goddard over Wanda Pass and on to the lakes around the base of Scylla? I move at an average to better than average pace.
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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby BSquared » Mon Jan 28, 2013 7:34 pm

WD, thanks for your suggestion: it's exactly what I had in mind, possibly for late this summer . I like your description of a "walk" from Florence. In addition, for someone who acclimates relatively slowly, the west-side entry gains altitude much more gradually.
—B²
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Re: Route Suggestions: 5-6 day trip to Ionian Basin

Postby sekihiker » Tue Feb 19, 2013 3:01 pm

Another possible trailhead to consider is the Maxson TH at Courtright Reservoir. For a trip report that visits the Ionian Basin (and beyond) see:

http://sierrahiker.home.comcast.net/~si ... index.html
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